A knowledge -- how to classify this type of nouns?

We probably would all agree that the noun ‘knowledge’ is uncountable and yet there are instances in which you can say ‘a knowledge’ as in the following example. How can we classify this type of nouns?

Erich Fromm discussed this remarkable phenomenon of ‘selective inattention’: man’s capacity for ‘not observing what he does not want to observe; hence, that he may be sincere in denying a knowledge which he would have, if he wanted only to have it’. (Fromm, ‘Beyond The Chains Of Illusion’, Abacus, 1989, p.94)

Here is another example that falls into the same category:

A key influence shaping the ‘selective inattention’ of corporate journalism was described by Lord Halifax:

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It is still classified as uncountable. I suspect that most uncountable nouns in English can have plural or singular usages. That doesn’t change the fact that it’s uncountable.

Having said that, “denying a knowledge” is taking liberty with the language in my opinion. It’s understandable but we would normally word it differently. Writers are allowed to be creative though, even encouraged to. I know when I was in school we were strongly urged away from rigid forms of writing.


Maybe it’s because Erich Fromm’s native language is German and not English.

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Who wrote it? It’s talking about Fromm, as if someone else wrote it.

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I don’t see anything out of the ordinary with “a knowledge”.

“He had a knowledge of calculus and a knowledge of history.”
“He had a knowledge of calculus and history.”

I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone use “knowledges”, but I did find a book title that compares different bodies of thought:

One World, Many Knowledges: Regional experiences and cross-regional links in higher education

  • Tar Halvorsen. 2016
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I love reading books. Can you recommend any adventure book or grammar book for me?

Let me know what books you read?

I am very curious.

Thank you in advance